Today we are featuring another of our Muse Conference workshop participants. During the week of our workshop, we challenged poets to write three different forms. We chose winners for each, and Saleema’s “My Sun” was clearly one of the best in the Persona form.
We are happy to have Saleema joining us today, to look back on her experience during the Muse Con, and share some of her poetry. And now I’m going to turn the floor over to her.
On the Muse Conference experience
You asked me what I liked about [the Muse Online Writers Conference]. I have to say everything. The conference is full of talented, generous writers, who go out of their way to be helpful and share their skills. I must admit that the poetry workshop took up most of my time this year. I’m not one of those poets who likes to write quickly. I often get inspirations, write them out in my notebook, and then type the notes (my rough draft) on the computer. After all this, I begin to sculpt the poem. I edit, tweak, research, and edit some more. For me writing is a quiet, internal process that even my humorous poems go through. So, given my immersion in anything I write, it’s always a challenge finding enough time to participate in all the conference workshops that catch my interest. The Muse Conference is boiling over with gallons and gallons of things to do, to learn, to write, to comment on, to correct, etc. It’s a wonderful whirlwind of activity and learning. So, I would have to say that the hardest thing about the Muse Conference for me, is having to accept that there’s only 24 hours in a day, and then pick my workshops very carefully. I’m so grateful that Lea keeps the forums up, so I can go back and catch up on everything I missed. That extra time gives us all the opportunity to work at our own pace and keep learning after the conference has officially ended. I enjoy my catch-up time in the forums almost as much as the conference.
The 2012 Conference was the first one to offer a weeklong poetry workshop… and it was fantastic! The critiques were great, and the spot on comments really helped me take my writing to another level. The assignments were enjoyable, though I have to admit, I ended up getting engrossed in the one that asked us to write a poem in another’s voice. I could have spent the entire workshop delving into that assignment. It was such fun and really helped me recognize the intricacies of my own voice. Actually, I’m still experimenting with that form.
I can say, in all honesty, that the Muse Poetry Workshop was one of the best I’ve ever taken. The level of feedback from the moderators and the workshop attendees was professional and insightful.
A Sample of Poetry by Saleema E. Giltinan
Wearers of Wool
far from the tower of Babel,
Peak Dwellers fly to the sun
gathering beams to shine
in the valley of snows.
Their points of view glow
with eternal verities
that enlighten all
who wish to see.
Who’s in Control?
plunging, swimming, floating
in deep and shallow ideas.
They are like TV shows
and radio broadcasts.
When their production
turns into a horror fest,
a fear mongering symphony,
or ridiculous repetitions,
simply change the channel.
Delve like a mole,
dig deep, deep, deeper;
tunnel through the soil
of elemental thought.
some will curve or spiral,
others will be straight
with narrow paths.
Roots of conditioning
groan, as you
toss them aside
Dig, dig, dig, far below
Remember, when you’re
tired, respite can be found
in the silent spaces
between your thoughts.
Education: I have a Master’s Degree in Psychology and a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work.
I’ve traveled extensively and spent several years living in India, journaling and studying eastern spiritual traditions. I have been a spiritual teacher for over twenty-five years. My favorite writing genre is poetry, although I also write inspirational non- fiction. My spiritual path inspires my poems. I enjoy writing poetry because metaphors and poetic stories provide a wonderful format to express spiritual concepts. The language of symbols is expansive and can speak to many different levels of consciousness. I love mixing symbols with practical day-to-day experiences as I craft my poems.
Publications: Other Sheep Magazine published one of my poems. I actually met the editor at the 2011 Muse Conference, pitched the poem, and got it published.
Thank you, Saleema, for taking our workshop, for the courage to share and grow, and for joining us here on our blog.
If you missed it, read the first post in our workshop participants series.
Comments on: "Spotlight on Saleema" (5)
Thank you so much Saleema for sharing your amazing inspirational poetry! It’s beautiful and uplifting. I would love to know more about what kind of spiritual teacher you are. Many Thanks and Blessings, Gale
Very nice poems, Sala!
You’re right, it was very hard to decide what workshops to take.
Thanks Gale and Jen… am glad you enjoyed the poems. Gale, you can reach me at: email@example.com
[…] February 5, I introduced Saleema, one of our workshop winners. I noted that Saleema was a winner in our Persona category. Today […]
*waves* Hi Sala. Beautiful poems as always. 🙂